Official confirms tensions over role of women in Obama White House

Tensions over the role of women in the first two years of President Obama's White House prompted him to elevate women into more senior positions, senior adviser Valerie Jarrett said in a Washington Post interview.

"There were some issues early on with women feeling as though they hadn't figured out what their role was going to be on the senior team at the White House," Jarrett said in the interview.

These particular tensions are among those highlighted in a controversial new book about the Obama White House by journalist Ron Suskind, Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President.

The book is based on more than 700 hours of interviews with senior officials and the president himself. It quotes top officials who describe a difficult work environment for women, among other tensions at the White House.

In the book, former White House communications director Anita Dunn is quoted as saying, "this place would be in court for a hostile workplace.... Because it actually fit all of the classic legal requirements for a genuinely hostile workplace to women."

The White House has pushed back on the book ahead of its official release, with press secretary Jay Carney and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner citing what they said were inaccuracies.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by eSignLive by VASCO

    Mobile E-Signatures for Government

    Learn 5 key trends that accelerate government demand for mobile signing.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Management Concepts

    SPONSORED: Successful Change Management Practices in the Public Sector

    How governmental agencies implement organizational change management.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Kronos

    Solving the Workforce Compliance Challenge

    Download this eBook to learn how data and automation can help state and local agencies.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.